Category: View from the Hill

If only politcal debates were civil?

Back in October 2004, I wrote about a slightly satirical, fictional debate between two political candidates. I never published it, until now.

As I re-read this piece, I reflected on the events that transpired from then until now. It was enlightening to say the least. Perhaps it will be that way, too, for you. The column begins, slightly abridged to fit into limited space.

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Do county critics have a better idea?

In Marion County, the subject of economic development and the question of what to do about it draws little press these days. Not that there is any interest in the subject, however. It?s just not considered a wise move to stick one?s neck out too far for fear of finding oneself on the proverbial chopping block of public and political opinion.

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Taking a break from the daily grind

In the business world, a 15-minute break from work at mid-morning and mid-afternoon is the norm. In agriculture, the work at hand determines the length and timing of the break.

A work break on my farm generally consists of stopping at the water hydrant for a refreshing drink when the need arises, or if on the tractor, a five-minute pause in the field to relax while checking machinery.

There are other, so-called work breaks in the farming world that may or may not be justified according to the work being done. They occur at the local coffee shop, if there is one, or nearest convenience store, like the Ampride convenience store on D Street.

One might find a gathering of like-minded folks in other locations as well. I happened upon two groups in the past month?at the dining area at Vogt?s Hometown Market (breakfast or noon mealtime) and the Lehigh elevator.

The purpose is mostly to socialize while taking that ?much needed? break from work.

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A season for therapeutic combining

What a difference a year makes when talking about wheat yields. Last year was a pleasant surprise when rains saved the crop as it was approaching the critical growth stage.

This year, the wheat had the potential to surpass all yield expectations. That is, until the fateful day in early April when the most beautiful spring snowfall foretold another story.

This year, the harvest experience is not an encouraging one, by any stretch of the imagination. It does, however, reinforce the old notion that one year rarely repeats itself in the next.

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Churches need more ‘dark horses’

Two controversies that surround the church have been in the news recently.

The first surrounds Ted Haggard, former pastor of the New Life Community Church in Colorado Springs, Colo., amid allegations of sexual misconduct and drug abuse.

The other alleges financial impropriety and personal misconduct within the network of churches associated with nationally known Calvary Chapel and its senior pastor, Chuck Smith.

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Catastrophes beyond the public eye

?Perception is reality? is an often-quoted marketing concept. Unfortunately, this statement reflects how most people and the media view the world these days, whether the topic is politics, world peace or anything in between.

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